Streetwise Advice: 6 Tips on Making Sales Calls

1. Have a Script

Because prospects have much less patience over the phone than in person, you need to have a script for telemarketing. Every telemarketer needs specific instructions on how to begin, conduct, and end each call. Try different scripts. Measure which script works best, and then make sure that the telemarketers stick to it.

2. Get to the Point

The most important part of the call is the beginning. You need to create some interest in the prospect’s mind and assure him or her that you are not going to take up a lot of time. You also need to qualify your prospect and determine whether he or she is someone you should spend time with. This is why it is so important to have a script and to carefully evaluate its effectiveness.

3. Keep It Sounding Natural

Ironically, while it is important to have a script, it is just as important for callers to sound like they aren’t reading from one. Prospects are less likely to have patience or engage in conversations with callers who sound as though they are delivering “canned” presentations.

  • Don’t read too fast.
  • Use natural and appropriate emphasis on key words.
  • Avoid speaking in a monotone.
  • Pause slightly at the end of each sentence.
  • Sound genuinely interested in the prospect’s questions, concerns, or objections.

4. Make Lots of Calls

Even more so than with in-person selling, telemarketing is a numbers game. No matter how good you are on each call, you’re not going to sell to everyone. How many calls you make will make a big difference in your success. A super-aggressive telemarketer may reach as many as 150 decision makers in a single day. A less aggressive telemarketer may only reach 20. Which one do you think will make more sales?

5. Keep It Short

While you should encourage your telemarketers to build a rapport with their targets, this shouldn’t take all day. Track the phone calls your telemarketers make to determine what length of time per phone call, on average, is ideal for qualifying, presenting, and closing a sale with a customer. Have your telemarketers try to stick to this ideal time frame.

6. Use a Headset

Make it as comfortable for yourself as possible to place calls. Use a headset. Get a long cord and maybe even walk around while you’re on the phone. Take a break every hour.

About Bob Adams

Bob Adams is a Harvard MBA serial entrepreneur. He has started over a dozen businesses including one that he launched with $1500 and sold for $40 million. He has written 17 books and created 52 online courses for entrepreneurs. Bob also founded BusinessTown, the go-to learning platform for starting and running a business.